Intended for healthcare professionals


Phyllis Marjorie Mortimer, née Spreadbury

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: (Published 03 August 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:283

Family planning doctor who was also medical adviser and a writer for the UK's first hospital soap opera

  1. Alyson Elliman,
  2. Frances Lefford,
  3. Jack Mortimer

    Emergency Ward 10 was the Casualty or ER of its day. It was a huge hit, drawing in 16 million viewers a week and 24 million at its peak. Produced by Associated Television, Emergency Ward 10, which was broadcast live in black and white, ran from 1957 to 1967, spawning a spin-off feature length film, a board game, and children's annuals. Phyllis was medical adviser and a writer for the series from 1960 to 1963. At Elstree studios, she worked closely with television writers and actors, much improving the accuracy of medicine and medical storylines. Emergency Ward 10 was a series of much integrity and public health value, and, effectively, the origin of all medical “soaps.” Phyllis maintained …

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